Ford Tourneo Connect review

Category: Van-based MPV

The Tourneo Connect is a very practical MPV but some rivals are better to drive

Ford Tourneo Connect front right driving
  • Ford Tourneo Connect front right driving
  • Ford Tourneo Connect rear cornering
  • Ford Tourneo Connect interior dashboard
  • Ford Tourneo Connect boot
  • Ford Tourneo Connect driver display
  • Ford Tourneo Connect right driving
  • Ford Grand Tourneo Connect right driving
  • Ford Grand Tourneo Connect front cornering
  • Ford Grand Tourneo Connect front right driving
  • Ford Tourneo Connect rear right driving
  • Ford Tourneo Connect front right static
  • Ford Tourneo Connect rear left static
  • Ford Tourneo Connect alloy wheel detail
  • Ford Tourneo Connect badge detail
  • Ford Tourneo Connect front interior
  • Ford Tourneo Connect interior infotainment
  • Ford Tourneo Connect interior front seats
  • Ford Tourneo Connect interior back seats
  • Ford Tourneo Connect interior back seats
  • Ford Grand Tourneo Connect boot
  • Ford Tourneo Connect front right driving
  • Ford Tourneo Connect rear cornering
  • Ford Tourneo Connect interior dashboard
  • Ford Tourneo Connect boot
  • Ford Tourneo Connect driver display
  • Ford Tourneo Connect right driving
  • Ford Grand Tourneo Connect right driving
  • Ford Grand Tourneo Connect front cornering
  • Ford Grand Tourneo Connect front right driving
  • Ford Tourneo Connect rear right driving
  • Ford Tourneo Connect front right static
  • Ford Tourneo Connect rear left static
  • Ford Tourneo Connect alloy wheel detail
  • Ford Tourneo Connect badge detail
  • Ford Tourneo Connect front interior
  • Ford Tourneo Connect interior infotainment
  • Ford Tourneo Connect interior front seats
  • Ford Tourneo Connect interior back seats
  • Ford Tourneo Connect interior back seats
  • Ford Grand Tourneo Connect boot
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Introduction

What Car? says...

The Ford Tourneo Connect is a rebadged variant of another brand's van-based MPV – and that's rather a good thing.

You see, because Ford based the Tourneo Connect on the rival VW Caddy it was able to tap into Volkswagen's decades of van experience, while also adding its own (not inconsiderable) know-how. In other words, this model is the result of two specialists coming together to pool a vast amount of knowledge and resources.

Unlike the closely related Ford Transit Connect small van, the Tourneo Connect is aimed at families who might also be considering an SUV or an estate car, and aims to provide maximum practicality. (Size wise it sits between the smaller Ford Tourneo Courier and the bigger Ford Tourneo Custom.)

For added interior and boot space, you can upgrade to the longer Grand Tourneo Connect, which comes with seven seats. The regular version has five seats as standard, but is also available as a seven-seater.

Read on to find out whether the Ford Tourneo Connect is a better choice of family transport than the Caddy and other models you might be considering – including the Citroën Berlingo, the Peugeot Rifter and the Dacia Jogger...

Overview

The Ford Tourneo Connect (or the longer Grand Tourneo Connect) is a practical choice for families not swayed by SUVs. It's fine to drive, safe and competitively priced against the related VW Caddy, but the interior isn’t anything special, and some MPVs offer more performance and greater refinement. We recommend the diesel engine over the petrol.

  • Five-star NCAP rating beats other MPVs
  • Pleasant to drive
  • Better value than the closely related VW Caddy
  • Slightly low-rent interior
  • Rivals have better rear seat space
  • Infotainment could be better
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Performance & drive

What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is

Strengths

  • +Strong diesel engine
  • +Slick auto gearbox
  • +Surprisingly good handling

Weaknesses

  • -Petrol engine is underpowered
  • -Poor refinement
  • -Crashy low-speed ride

The Ford Tourneo Connect comes with either a 112bhp 1.5-litre petrol engine or a 2.0-litre diesel with 120bhp. They're both available with a six-speed manual gearbox or a seven-speed double-clutch automatic.

We’ve driven both versions with auto gearboxes, and our pick of the engines would be the diesel, which has plenty of low-end shove. It’s not that the petrol is a bad match for the Tourneo Connect, but it does need to be worked hard to get the best performance, and has a slower 0-62mph time of 11.9 seconds for the non-Grand version (versus the diesel’s 11.2 seconds time).

The auto gearbox delivers quick and smooth gear changes once you're on the move. We've tried the six-speed manual box in the VW Caddy Cargo van and it has a slick, purposeful shift action, so we'd expect the same in the Tourneo Connect.

The diesel engine is a bit grumbly at idle and really needs the extra seventh gear to keep engine noise low at a cruise. The petrol engine is a bit quieter and smoother, but not by much. The steep windscreen and chunky door mirrors also create more wind noise than more car-life MPVs. 

Despite its van origins, the driving experience in the Tourneo Connect is not dissimilar to in a car, with accurate steering and strong brakes. Even so, due to its height and weight, it can’t match the composure of the best MPVs – the VW Touran for example.

Ford Tourneo Connect image
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The suspension also tends to make a loud thump over bumps and imperfections, resulting in a crashy low-speed ride. On the plus side, body lean isn’t as extreme as you might expect in such a tall vehicle. Grip levels are ample, and it can cope with you trying to get a wriggle on down a country road.

Ford Tourneo Connect rear cornering

Interior

The interior layout, fit and finish

Strengths

  • +Comfortable driving position
  • +Good all-round visibility

Weaknesses

  • -Cheap interior plastics
  • -Fiddly infotainment
  • -Rear-view camera costs extra

The Ford Tourneo Connect is a step ahead of the mechanically similar VW Caddy here, because as well as that car's range of adjustments in the seat and steering wheel, it also has adjustable lumbar support as standard.

Likewise, front and rear parking sensors are standard on the Tourneo Connect, whereas you’ll have to go for pricier Life trim in the Caddy to get them. A rear-view camera is available as an option, but it's not vital because the big windows give you a fine view out.

As per the Caddy, the Tourneo Connect has a disappointing interior that’s full of hard plastics. Only the armrests get soft surfaces, which marks down the Tourneo against the Dacia Jogger with its tasteful cloth trim and satin chrome accents. There are a few storage space in the dashboard and central console, which also has twin cupholders.

All versions of Tourneo Connect get the larger 10in touchscreen infotainment screen that’s reserved for the options list of the Caddy. Sat-nav is standard, as is DAB radio, and Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone connectivity.

Having a larger screen is useful, but the infotainment is basically a Volkswagen system that first saw the light of day in the VW Golf and is not the best. A Ford "skin" has been applied over the top, but it has the same confusing menu arrangement.

The lack of physical (or illuminated) controls for the air-con becomes infuriating, especially at night. Even changing the volume of the radio can be fiddly, and is best done using the buttons on the steering wheel.

Ford Tourneo Connect interior dashboard

Passenger & boot space

How it copes with people and clutter

Strengths

  • +Plenty of head room
  • +Useful sliding doors
  • +Big boot

Weaknesses

  • -Limited leg room in the short-wheelbase version
  • -Boot requires lots of clearance to open

We've tested the Ford Tourneo Connect and the Ford Grand Tourneo Connect (the longer version).

In both models, the cavernous interior means there’s plenty of shoulder, head and leg room in the front, while the second row seats are wide enough to allow three adults to sit side by side with only mild shoulder rubbing.

In the standard-wheelbase version, rear leg room isn’t particularly generous, and you can't slide the seats back and forth, as you can in the VW Touran. Plus, the way the two front seats are arranged in both versions means the two outer back-seat passengers have to sit slightly skewed to fit their feet under the seat ahead of them.

The Grand Tourneo Connect, with its longer wheelbase, allows for the second-row seats to be pushed back further, liberating more leg room, so it's the one to go for if you regularly transport taller people in the back.

On seven-seat cars, the removable third row is mounted fairly close to the floor, so under-thigh support is lacking. Leg room is tolerable for adults (more so than in the Seat Tarraco and the VW Tiguan Allspace third rows), while head room is excellent.

You get twin sliding rear doors, but there’s a high sill to clamber over to get in, which might cause problems for passengers with mobility issues.

Boot capacity is excellent when only five seats are in place. The regular Tourneo Connect has an official capacity of 1,100 litres, while the Grand has 1,452 litres. In other words, any size of pushchair or bicycle will fit in, and if you fold or remove all the rear seats, you’ll have yourself a removal van.

Standard-wheelbase models with all seven seats fitted have a very small boot, but the Grand has a decent amount of cargo space behind its sixth and seventh seats.

As with many van-based MPVs, the rear boot hatch is a huge panel that requires a certain amount of clearance to open, so make sure you don’t park too close to anything behind you. There is the option to have it open electrically to make life a little easier.

There's no handy glass window you can open independently to grab smaller items, which is a shame. You can get one of those on the Peugeot Rifter and the Vauxhall Combo Life.

Ford Tourneo Connect boot

Buying & owning

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

Strengths

  • +Well priced against the VW Caddy
  • +Reasonable fuel economy
  • +Good safety rating

Weaknesses

  • -Some rivals are cheaper
  • -Electric rivals make better company cars

The Ford Tourneo Connect shares a lot with the VW Caddy – but not its pricing. While the entry-level Titanium costs a bit more than the cheapest Caddy, it's much better equipped, and in terms of kit for your money, the Tourneo Connect comes out on top. 

That said, the Citroën Berlingo, the Peugeot Rifter, the Vauxhall Combo Life and the seven-seat Dacia Jogger costs less than both.

Although finance quotes weren’t available at the time of writing, the Tourneo Connect has similar resale values to the Caddy. That should make it competitive if you're buying on PCP (future values form an important part of the calculations).

Official fuel economy and emissions are respectable for this type of vehicle, with the petrol achieving more than 40mpg and the diesels getting into the mid-50s.

If you are looking for an MPV as a company car you'll be far better off with an electric or plug-in hybrid (PHEV) vehicle. The fully electric Citroën e-Berlingo, Peugeot e-Rifter and Vauxhall Combo-e Life have very low BIK tax rates. A PHEV version of the Tourneo Connect is said to be on the way.

The Tourneo Connect scored five stars out of five for safety when it was tested by Euro NCAP (the same as the Caddy). That’s partly down to the fact that it comes with automatic emergency braking (AEB) and lane-keeping assistance as standard. Adaptive cruise control and road-sign detection are all optional. The Jogger did very badly in this area, gaining only one NCAP star in 2021.

In terms of reliability, Ford ranked 17th out of 32 manufacturers in the 2023 What Car? Reliability Survey – higher than Volkswagen (22nd) but lower than Dacia (11th). It might be worth paying more attention to Volkswagen's score in this area though, seeing as the Tourneo Connect is based on the Caddy. On the plus side, you do get a three-year, 100,000-mile warranty.


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Ford Tourneo Connect driver display

FAQs

  • Yes, but it’s now based on the VW Caddy. Both cars are built by Volkswagen in Poznań, Poland and share many features, including the interior and engines.

  • The Ford Tourneo Connect is a car (well, strictly speaking a van-based MPV) but there is a van called the Ford Transit Connect.

  • Some versions are. The regular Tourneo Connect is available with seven seats as standard, while the Grand Tourneo Connect (which is slightly longer) is a seven-seater as standard.

At a glance
New car deals
Save up to £4,865
Target Price from £33,576
Save up to £4,865
or from £486pm
Swipe to see used car deals
Nearly new deals
From £28,799
RRP price range £33,820 - £38,066
Number of trims (see all)2
Number of engines (see all)2
Available fuel types (which is best for you?)diesel, petrol
MPG range across all versions 48.8 - 59.2
Available doors options 5
Warranty 3 years / 100000 miles
Company car tax at 20% (min/max) £2,250 / £2,491
Company car tax at 40% (min/max) £4,500 / £4,982
Available colours